October 12, 2018

Grassley Bill to Support Response to Child Exploitation Becomes Law

WASHINGTON – President Trump signed into law legislation authored by Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) to help states prevent and respond to crimes targeting vulnerable children. The Missing Children’s Assistance Act of 2018 extends and updates law that makes resources available to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) for the continued fight against child abduction and exploitation.
“Community leaders at the grass roots of America are on the front lines in the effort to protect vulnerable youngsters from abuse and exploitation – crimes that too often go unrecognized, but can have a divesting impact. Organizations like the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children provide families, caregivers, schools and other community leaders with critical support needed to prevent and respond to child exploitation. My legislation, which the President has signed into law, empowers NCMEC and similar organizations to continue their important work to care for our children,” Grassley said.
The legislation updates terms that are used in the Missing Children’s Assistance Act to reflect the latest research and trends. It extends funding for five more years, at the current level of $40 million, for NCMEC and other organizations that help prevent and respond to offenses committed against vulnerable children.  It also ensures continued federal support of efforts by state and local entities to recover missing and exploited children—including children who are the victim of kidnapping and child pornography crimes. And the bill includes measures to ensure that school personnel, law enforcement, individuals and other non-governmental organizations can receive technical assistance and training on how to prevent, recover, and help missing, abducted, or exploited children.
Grassley introduced the legislation on August 16. The Judiciary Committee reported it to the full Senate on September 18. The Senate passed the bill on September 27 and the House of Representatives passed it the following day.
The bill is cosponsored by Senators Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif), Orrin Hatch (R-Utah), Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), Rob Portman (R-Ohio), Dean Heller (R-Nev.), Thom Tillis (R-N.C.), Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) and John Cornyn (R-Texas).
Full text of the bill can be found HERE.